I stumbled upon that old witticism the other day: “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle.”
Some of you may have been introduced to this saying via a U2 song called “Trying to Throw Your Arms Around the World.” But it has been traced back to feminist icon Gloria Steinem, who in turn credits an Australian writer, politician and activist named Irina Dunn. Dunn reportedly coined this phrase sometime around 1970.
But listen up, men. It’s time to debunk this aphoristic slap in the face. I am here to disprove this clever little maxim.
So, a proof:
- Scientists are learning that climate change (among other problems) is harming the oceans.
- We believe — at least many of us do — that carbon-dioxide-caused climate change is partly the result too damn many cars.
- Given: fish live in oceans.
- Given: bicycles emit no carbon dioxide
- Ergo: more bikes would be good for fish.
Gentlemen, fish really do need bicycles.
In no way do I mean any disrespect to Irina Dunn or Gloria Steinem — or Bono for that matter. All of whom have done far nobler things than I ever will.
Nor does this proof suggests that women actually do need men. We merely have shown here today that Dunn’s pithy maxim needs updating.
I know that is terribly not poetic. But just so you know: You can disparage men all you want. We deserve it, I’m sure. But disparaging the bicycle will not stand!